Lawmen: Bass Reeves faithfully portrays the life of Bass Reeves, an authentic historical figure born into slavery in 1838, who later became one of the pioneering Black U.S. Marshals in the western region of the Mississippi River.
Drawing inspiration from Reeves' well-documented life, chronicled in Art T.
Burton's book «Black Gun, Silver Star: The Life and Legend of Frontier Marshal Bass Reeves,» the series unveils Reeves' journey from enslavement to a prominent figure in law enforcement. Art T.
Burton, a former Loyola University professor of African American Studies, provides a crucial historical foundation for understanding Reeves' life.
Reeves, brilliantly portrayed by David Oyelowo, stands as a towering figure, not only as one of the greatest frontier heroes but also as one of the first Black deputy U.S. marshals to serve west of the Mississippi River.
The series captures his tenure as a federal peace officer in the post-Reconstruction era, highlighting his capture of over 3,000 notorious criminals without sustaining any injuries.
The official synopsis, as per IMDb, succinctly summarizes the show: «About the legendary lawman Bass Reeves, one of the greatest frontier heroes and one of the first Black deputy U.S. marshals west of the Mississippi River.»
For those diving into this gripping series, the question may arise: Was Bass Reeves a real historical figure or a fictional creation for this exceptional drama? Fortunately, the series is grounded in true events and the essence of Bass Reeves' life, drawing on documented history.